Thursday Night Football: Stumbling Titans Look To Regroup In Week 16

Posted on December 21, 2021 - Last Updated on March 6, 2024

Anyone watching Sunday’s Week 15 matchup knows it ended less as a Steelers win and more of a Titans loss.

Four Tennessee turnovers led to 12 points and a 19-16 victory for Pittsburgh at Heinz Field. They even gave up a rushing touchdown to Ben Roethlisberger.

The Titans somehow remain AFC South leaders, ranked third in the division behind the Chiefs and the Patriots. But a Thursday Night Football win this week is necessary to stay in the race.

Volunteer State sportsbook odds suggest Tennessee will have a hard time regrouping in Week 16 as they host the San Francisco 49ers in a TNF showdown.

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How to watch: San Francisco 49ers at Tennessee Titans

Who: San Francisco (8-6) at Tennessee (9-5)

When: 7:20 p.m., CST, Thursday

Where: Nissan Stadium, Nashville, Tenn.

TV: NFL Network

Radio: WGFX 104.5 FM

TNF odds favor San Francisco in Week 16

With this TNF clash just days away, the visiting 49ers are slight favorites over the Titans.

Most sportsbooks are giving the home underdogs points. The Titans are 8-6 against the spread this season while the Niners have split at 7-7.

Tennessee’s best moneyline sits at odds, while the 49ers’ best line is .

Oddsmakers predict an over/under of points. The over has hit in seven contests for both the Titans and the Steelers.

Despite Tennessee’s stumbles, a playoff berth and division title remain on the table. Caesars Sportsbook favors the Titans to win the AFC South with odds over the Indianapolis Colts with odds.

The Titans sit behind the Chiefs, Patriots, Bills and Colts, respectively, to win the AFC with odds sitting at . To win it all, oddsmakers have Tennessee and Indy tied at 9th with a 22 to 1 shot at the Lombardi with odds of .

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Titans lose Week 15 game despite domination

Looking at stats alone, one might assume the Titans beat the Steelers in Week 15. Tennessee controlled possession 39:08 to 20:52, and gained 318 total yards to Pittsburgh’s 168. And compared to the Steelers’ 12 first downs, the Titans had a total of 22.

But then there were the turnovers.

Three fumbles and one interception all ended in field goals for Pittsburgh. Sunday’s loss caps a disappointing 1-3 run for the Derrick Henry-less team. Tennessee has racked up 13 turnovers in the past four games, with their sole victory coming against the 2- 12 Jaguars.

The Titans will struggle mightily on Thursday if the sloppy play continues. Moreover, the statuses of A.J. Brown and Julio Jones remain unknown as of Monday. Brown is now eligible to come off the IR list, but Jones left Sunday’s game with an apparent flare-up of a prior hamstring injury.

Henry’s status also remains uncertain, though some predictions say he could return in Week 18, especially if the playoff situation were dire. If Tennessee wins Thursday and Indy loses to Arizona, the Titans will clinch the division.

As the third seed, a path to a conference title still exists. But it will require help from others.

In Sunday’s game, Ryan Tannehill rushed five times for 18 yards and a touchdown but threw no touchdown passes. He finished 23-of-32 for 153 and one interception. D’Onta Foreman had 22 carries for 108 yards and two catches for 27 yards.

Nick Westbrook-Ikhine and Chester Rogers each had four receptions. Westbrook-Ikhine had 32 yards and Rogers netted 30.

Pittsburg’s banged up Roethlisberger went 16-for-25 and threw for 148 yards and was sacked three times. He also scored a rushing touchdown – his first in three years.

49ers roll past Falcons

The Niners make this week’s trip to the East Coast on a two-game win streak following an easy Week 15 victory over Atlanta. They’re 5-1 in the last six games and a No. 6 seed in the NFC playoff race. Winning at least one of their last three games would likely secure them post-season entry.

San Fran piled up 397 yards against Atlanta. Jimmy Garoppolo was 16-for-23 and threw for 235 yards and a touchdown. Jeff Wilson Jr. led the rushing effort with 21 carries for 110 yards and a touchdown.

Deebo Samuel also rushed for a touchdown, finishing with six carries for 29 yards and 60 yards off four receptions. Kyle Juszczyk and Jauan Jennings each scored in the air and on the ground, respectively.

George Kittle had six catches for 93 yards. Nick Bosa extended his streak to six games with at least one sack. He has 15 on the season.

History favors San Francisco

San Francisco and Tennessee have played each other 14 times since 1970, including the Houston Oilers years from 1970 to 1996. Whether the Titans or the Oilers, the 49ers have the drop on the series with nine wins. The last result was a 25-23 Niners win on Dec. 17, 2017 in San Francisco. The last Titans victory came in 2009 as a 34-27 win in San Francisco.

With any luck though, Tennessee will end its losing streak in this upcoming Week 16 TNF matchup — despite the odds.

Photo by Associated Press
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